Like his predecessors, State Representative John LaBruzzo (R-Metairie) apparently enjoys the attention. In 2008, LaBruzzo made national headlines after floating the idea of paying poor women $1,000 each to get their tubes tied, while, at the same time, providing tax incentives for wealthier women to have children. Critics accused him of promoting eugenics, a charge I’m certain he would swiftly deny. Notably, nearly two decades ago, David Duke, the former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, served the same exact district in the Louisiana House of Representatives, and in 1991, just like LaBruzzo, Mr. Duke also made national news after he proposed providing $100 a year to welfare recipients who used a sterilization drug.
For some, to quote Yogi Berra, it was “deja vu all over again.”
Now, Mr. LaBruzzo’s back in the national news. He’s currently proposing a bill that would directly challenge Supreme Court precedent and ban all abortions in Louisiana, except in the event that a mother’s life is in danger. Recently, he compared women who seek abortions to drug users. When the bill was up for discussion in committee, LaBruzzo said, “It doesn’t matter if you’ve voted for every pro-life bill that’s come to this committee. This is THE pro-life bill. This is THE pro-life bill. And I’d think you’d be in a difficult situation if you voted against this bill and tried to convince everybody that you are adamantly pro-life.” John LaBruzzo, you see, owns this issue: Either you vote for his radical bill– a bill that some believe could threaten a woman’s fundamental access to birth control– or you’re against human life.
Enough of the snark. I don’t have any desire, at all, to debate abortion, though I do believe that taxpayers in Mr. LaBruzzo’s district are wasting their hard-earned money paying the salary of a man who seems to be more interested in being a right-wing, ridiculously provocative culture warrior than doing anything concretely for his constituents. Maybe they think it puts them on the map. Maybe they’re just used to that type of representation.
Either way, here’s my challenge to Mr. LaBruzzo and to every single member of the Louisiana legislature. In fairness and in all honesty, it’s not my original idea; it’s my friend’s idea, and I think it has merit.
John LaBruzzo, literally, wants to redefine the legal definition of human life. That’s his right as a lawmaker.
So, let’s be morally and legally consistent, as much as that is possible, even if it is just a massive waste of time and taxpayer money.
If this actually, somehow passes, then it should do so with at least one amendment: The Jindal Amendment.
As the son of Indian immigrants who was born in Baton Rouge, Bobby Jindal, at birth, was an American citizen. His parents may have been citizens of India at the time, but Governor Jindal was born on American soil. In America, he was entitled citizenship by virtue of his birth here in the Gret Stet of Louisiana. It’s difficult for me to believe that Governor Jindal would ever sign into law something that could potentially disqualify the meritoriousness of his own citizenship or the potentiality of future immigrants to enjoy the same rights he has, including the right to, one day, become President of the United States.
So, to members of the legislature and to the Governor, if we’re going to redefine life, we are also duly obligated to redefine citizenship.
Ergo, the Jindal Amendment: To provide that the full privileges, rights, and benefits of natural-born citizenship shall be granted to to all persons conceived within the official, duly-recognized political boundaries of the United States of America.